Artwork > Vienna Dioscorides

My work explores my interest in plants, their relationship to our health, and the importance of diversity in food production; especially genetically diverse plants and crops. My intricate drawings reflect on the complexities found in the natural world and the essential qualities each contributes to the whole, echoing the importance of diversity in maintaining, not only individual health, but the health of communities and ecosystems.



Wooly Blackberry
Thread & Organza
14.5" x 11.5"
2017
Rosemary
Thread & Organza
14.25 x 10.5
2017
Lemon Balm
Thread & Organza
13.25" x 11.5"
2017
European Wild Ginger
Thread & Organza
11" x 12.5"
2017
Wild Carrot
Thread & Organza
14.25" x 11"
2017
Lettuce
Thread & Organza
11.5" x 11"
2017
Arugula
Thread & Organza
12" x 11.5"
2017
Sweet Basil
Thread & Organza
13.5" x 11"
2017
Wild Cabbage
Thread & Organza
13.5" x 11.25"
2017
Celery
Thread & Organza
14.25" x 11.75"
2017
Dill
Thread & Organza
14" x 11.5"
2017
Spearmint
Thread & Organza
14.75" x 11.75"
2017
Garlic
Thread & Organza
13.5" x 11.75"
2017
White Mustard
Thread & Organza
14" x 10"
2017
Fava Bean
Thread & Organza
14.25" x 9.5"
2017
Giant Fennel
Thread & Organza
15" x 12"
2017
Black Elderberry
Thread & Organza
13.5" x 11.5"
2017
Coriander
Thread & Organza
13.5" x 10.5"
2017
Cumin
Thread & Organza
14" x 11.5"
2017
Chickpea
Thread & Organza
13.25" x 11"
2017
Common Purslane
Thread & Organza
12" x 11"
2017
Radish
Thread & Organza
13.5" x 10"
2017
Creeping Thyme
Thread & Organza
13.5" x 11"
2017
Turnip
Thread & Organza
13" x 11.25"
2017
Leek
Thread & Organza
13.75" x 8"
2017
Castor Bean
Thread & Organza
13" x 11"
2016
Sea Orache
Thread & Organza
13.75" 11.5"
2016
Purple Nut Sedge
Thread & Organza
13.5" X 9"
2016
Bearded Iris
Thread & Organza
14" x 10.5"
2016
Yarrow
Thread & Organza
14" x 10.75"
2016
Wild Arum
Thread & Organza
12.75" x 10.75"
2016
Wormwood
Thread & Organza
13" x 9.5"
2016
Cowpea
Thread & Organza
12.75" x 10.5"
2016

Research into the historical role of plants’ medicinal and nutritional properties, brought me to the fountainhead of herbals; the Greek pharmacopeia written by Dioscorides in c. 65 AD. Dioscorides text was considered the authority on medicinal plants for over 1500 years. The Vienna Dioscorides (512 AD) contains the oldest surviving complete manuscript of Dioscorides’ pharmacopeia.

Several of the nearly 400 uniquely animated plant paintings depicted in the Vienna Dioscorides are still known to us today. These plants create a connection to this ancient text, linking past to present. These paintings are the inspiration for my free-motion embroidered drawings. Stitched on translucent organza, and floated away from the wall, the drawings create a cast shadow. Both images subtly moving as the fabric shifts.

I seek to keep their original playful spirit alive by relating their incredible structures through line, tone, and shadow while contemplating the benefits, beauty, and richness found within diverse communities.